Nerine sarniensis 'Corusca Major'

Jim McKenney
Sat, 04 Oct 2008 09:31:13 PDT
Nerine sarniensis ‘Corusca Major’ has an inflorescence on the way up here. 

This is planted in the soil of a protected cold frame; it’s been there for
about three years – outside 24/7/365. . It blooms yearly but so far not
freely (i.e there are other bulbs which are not blooming now). The cold
frame is a true cold frame – the only  heat comes from whatever is stored in
the soil and from the sunshine. The cold frame is against the house and some
heat probably seeps into the soil from the house. 

In this same frame there is a plant of Amaryllis belladonna. It’s doing
something now, too, but I don’t think what I see emerging from the bulb is
an inflorescence: we’ll see. 

No sign here yet of the late blooming Lycoris such as L. radiata and L.
“aurea mercatorum”. 

Last year, which was very hot and dry for us (and these conditions persisted
right through October), very few colchicums bloomed here. I was concerned,
but the subsequent vegetative growth was strong. This year we had a much
better colchicum season, including the blossoming of a plant received as
‘Glory of Heemstede’ four years ago: this plant bloomed this year for the
first time. The flower was not tessellated and that seems to rule out ‘Glory
of Heemstede’. The late blooming period and coloration suggest one of the
forms or hybrids of Colchicum speciosum. So do the comparatively wide outer
tepals – over an inch and a quarter wide. The bloom (yes, so far only one)
rose out of the ground ten inches, straight up, and retained a goblet-funnel
outline. Whatever it is, I’m glad to have it. 

I’m giving a talk on bulbs to a local garden group the week after next: what
should I tell them? 

Also in bloom now: Tricyrtis macrantha. Not a geophyte, but related to many
which are. The flowers suggest yellow fritillaries to me – right down to the
profuse red spotting on the inside of the bell-shaped flower. 

Jim McKenney
Montgomery County, Maryland, USA, 39.03871º North, 77.09829º West, USDA zone
7, where I've been harvesting lily seed. 
My Virtual Maryland Garden
Webmaster Potomac Valley Chapter, NARGS 
Editor PVC Bulletin 
Webmaster Potomac Lily Society

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